Friday, June 26, 2009

Our Wedding: The Chapel

Previously in this series- Our Wedding: The Inspiration

Now that Brent and I knew how we wanted our wedding to be, we had to decide on our locations. For a while I had been pretty sure I wanted to have the reception in the backyard of my parent's ranch house in Central Texas. I had some very nice memories there, and the space was quite conducive to partying. It has a gravel "dance floor" area surrounded by a low stone wall, a large comfy porch with seating, and oak trees covering it all. It's nothing too fancy, but I thought it was perfect.

The hard part was finding a place to have the ceremony. We drove around and found a tiny white clapboard church called Bethel Chapel that was about a mile down the road from the ranch house. My mom tracked down a local who could unlock it for us, and when we stepped inside, it was a marvelous moment. I was just as scared as I was excited, I think. The interior was charming and rustic and simple, just what I wanted. It was also a wreck. There were holes in the floor, animal droppings, wasps nests, junk, and a thick pile of dust on every surface. Check out these pics!







Pretty scary huh? We left the chapel to talk it over, and I was pretty keen on the place. My mom, however, put in a good effort trying to talk me out of it. She had some compelling arguments. So we went back to the area weeks later and spent an entire day driving to every church within one hour of the ranch house. But nothing sparked my imagination like Bethel Chapel. So I made my decision and stayed resolute, and my mom knew that it was a done deal.

We were told we could use the space for free, and were given a key to keep until after the wedding. Brent and I and our close friends spent one weekend with some tools and elbow grease and got the place into a presentable state. It was so fun at the end of the weekend to sit there in the chapel on a pew with Brent and picture ourselves in several months saying our vows in the same spot. It was all very magical. I especially love that the chapel has so much history. In fact, the itinerant preacher for Bethel Chapel preached to Robert E. Lee's troops when they were stationed in nearby Mason. Cool huh?

But wait, there is a moral to this story, and it is this: when it comes to planning your wedding, feel free to think outside the box. Use your imagination. Even if it doesn't make perfect sense, or it's not practical, or it takes a lot of work, if you want it, go for it!

A few pics from the wedding day, by Casey.




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